?Former Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has revealed in an interview the difficulties he faced in keeping Luis Suarez at the club during his time at Anfield.
Rodgers, now in charge of Scottish giants Celtic, spoke honestly about the relentless pressure of managing a club of Liverpool’s stature, whilst admitting that the club did well to keep hold of Suarez for as long as they did.
Speaking exclusively to ?The Coaches Voice, Rodgers said;
“When I first went in there, Luis was destined for ?Juventus, and we were able to talk him round into staying, telling him that the team would be built around him and his qualities.
“Second season, we obviously had the ?Arsenal connection. Then he went on to have his best season and then that following season we couldn’t keep him.”
The Uruguayan striker eventually moved to ?Barcelona for a fee of £65m during the summer of 2014, with Rodgers acknowledging that managers are powerless when a player has made the decision to move on.
“You always felt at Liverpool that you could pay the wages and you could pay the money, but if it was through choice, if the player wanted to move on then that’s what he would do. So there was real disappointment.”
Rodgers masterminded Liverpool’s surge towards the Premier League title during the 2013/2014 season, but struggled to maintain the success achieved whilst Suarez was at the club. He was sacked after the Merseyside derby in October 2015, and Rodgers revealed the pressure and expectations of managing the Reds had taken its toll on him.
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“I wanted to go away and reflect on my time at Liverpool, but also to regain two elements that I believe are absolutely vital to any manager: energy, and happiness.
“No matter what you do in life, I feel that you need both. But, in particular for a football manager, and for me at that time, they were crucial. If you are energised and happy, you can do your job much better.”
The Northern Irishman took charge at Celtic Park in 2016, leading the Bhoys to the fourth domestic treble in the club’s history, going unbeaten in the process. Their record run of 69 games without defeat was ended last month with a 4-0 defeat at Hearts.
Following Philippe Coutinho’s £142m move from Liverpool to Barcelona, the Catalan side are reportedly preparing to announce that the Brazilian will wear Johan Cruyff’s famous the number 14 shirt for Blaugrana.
Synonymous with Dutch legend Johan Cruyff during his time at the Nou Camp, the three-time Ballon d’Or winner earned a ?La Liga and Copa Del Rey title during his playing career there. The FIFA World Cup runner-up also had an extremely successful tenure as the club’s manager, winning four consecutive La Liga titles and a UEFA Champions League.
The iconic number 14 shirt is currently held by current squad member Javier Mascherano, although with the Argentinian’s prospective move to China ed?ging? ever closer, this opens the door for Coutinho to don the famous number.
Coutinho had previously worn number ten during his time at ?Liverpool. However this number is currently worn by Lionel Messi at Barça.
The diminutive Brazilian is set to make his ?Barcelona debut at the end of the month in a home game against
According to the
“There has been a very important reduction, even though we cannot publicly give the figures.
We are not going to discuss the numbers. The important thing is we have the player here.
Coutinho, who reportedly paid £9m of his own money to facilitate the transfer, has cost Barcelona £105m up front with a further £37m in achievable add-ons.
However, Coutinho will be pushed down to the third highest in the summer when Kylian Mbappe’s loan spell at PSG is made permanent.
?Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard has revealed that he is still digesting Philippe Coutinho’s move from Liverpool to Barcelona, but admits that he felt his old side did everything they could to keep the Brazilian at Anfield.
Coutinho’s £142m move to Barcelona was ?confirmed over the weekend, and like most Liverpool fans, it seems that the disappointment of losing their prised asset is still raw for Gerrard.
While working as a pundit for BT Sport on tonight’s FA Cup Third Round match between Brighton and Crystal Palace, Gerrard was asked how he felt about the move, and responded by saying: “I’m still digesting it as a Liverpool fan.”
“I’m still digesting it, as a Liverpool fan…”@rioferdy5: “You feel sick?” ?
Steven Gerrard discusses Philippe Coutinho’s transfer to Barcelona… ? pic.twitter.com/o4e4MAhHYV
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) January 8, 2018
Gerrard was then asked by fellow pundit Rio Ferdinand if he was “feeling sick” about the move, to which the former Liverpool skipper answered simply: “yeah.”
Asked if he was surprised that the move had taken place in January, Gerrard replied: “I’m not surprised, and I know that Liverpool have done everything they can to keep him.” The former England international then acknowledged: “when a kid’s got a dream, a South American, and wants to play for Barcelona and he thinks this is the only opportunity he’s going to get it’s very hard to stop him.”
Gerrard did however admit that the attraction of Barcelona and Coutinho’s attitude since his move to the Nou Camp failed to materialise in the summer meant that he respected the Brazilian’s decision and wished him all the best.
Liverpool face a daunting start to life without Coutinho in their first match since his departure when they host league leaders Manchester City at Anfield on Sunday.
?Real Madrid megastar Cristiano Ronaldo has reportedly questioned the wisdom of Philippe Coutinho’s whopping £142m move to ?Barcelona, suggesting he will play second fiddle to Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez.
In a move aimed to unsettle the Catalan giants, Ronaldo is reported to have said that Coutinho will live in the shadow of Messi and Suarez, picking up the role vacated by Neymar, who joined Paris Saint-Germain in a world-record transfer last summer.
According to Diario Gol, Ronaldo believes that Coutinho has been brought in to do the leg work for Barcelona’s two main superstars, creating more opportunities for the dynamic duo to add to their already impressive goal tallies.
Brazilian team-mate Neymar is understood to have left Camp Nou during the summer having become disillusioned with life at Barcelona, with many sources suggesting he had become unhappy playing a supporting role to his two team-mates.
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Despite this, Coutinho himself has claimed that his international colleague encouraged him to make the move to Barca, saying;
Ronaldo’s alleged comments come at a time where ?Real Madrid find themselves significantly off the pace in La Liga, trailing their great rivals by 16 points and languishing in a lowly fourth place.
Cristiano Ronaldo’s game by numbers vs. Celta Vigo:
2 take-ons failed
1 chance created
1 take-on completed
Not at the races. pic.twitter.com/iq5XeDfiEQ
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) January 7, 2018
The Portuguese icon is enduring his worst season for Los Blancos in terms of goalscoring, netting only four times in 13 league appearances, though he did become the first player in history to score in every group game of the Champions League, scoring nine times in total.